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Definitions of White-collar

  1. (adjective) Of or relating to individuals who work in offices or other professional settings.
  2. (adjective) Of or relating to work done by such individuals.

White-collar Pronunciation

Pronunciation Usage Guide

Syllabification: white col·lar

Audio Pronunciation

– American English
– British English

Phonetic Spelling

  • American English – /wIEt-kAHl-uhr/
  • British English – /wiet-kOl-uh/

International Phonetic Alphabet

  • American English – /waɪt-ˈkɑlər/
  • British English – /ˌwʌɪtˈkɒlə/

Usage Notes

  • Plural: white-collars
  • White-collar is a reference to the white dress shirts worn by professionals such as bankers and lawyers.
  • White-collar is contrasted to blue-collar.

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Additional Information

Related Terms

Works Consulted

Ferris, Kerry, and Jill Stein. 2010. The Real World: An Introduction to Sociology. 2nd ed. New York: Norton.

Macionis, John, and Kenneth Plummer. 2012. Sociology: A Global Introduction. 4th ed. Harlow, England: Pearson Education.

Macmillan. (N.d.) Macmillan Dictionary. (https://www.macmillandictionary.com/).

Random House Webster’s College Dictionary. 1997. New York: Random House.

Scott, John, and Gordon Marshall. 2005. A Dictionary of Sociology. New York: Oxford University Press.

Taylor & Francis. (N.d.) Routledge Handbooks Online. (https://www.routledgehandbooks.com/).

Thompson, William E., and Joseph V. Hickey. 2012. Society in Focus: An Introduction to Sociology. 7th ed. Boston: Allyn & Bacon.

Wiley. (N.d.) Wiley Online Library. (http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/).

Cite the Definition of White-collar

ASA – American Sociological Association (5th edition)

Bell, Kenton, ed. 2014. “white-collar.” In Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Retrieved May 24, 2024 (https://sociologydictionary.org/white-collar/).

APA – American Psychological Association (6th edition)

white-collar. (2014). In K. Bell (Ed.), Open education sociology dictionary. Retrieved from https://sociologydictionary.org/white-collar/

Chicago/Turabian: Author-Date – Chicago Manual of Style (16th edition)

Bell, Kenton, ed. 2014. “white-collar.” In Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Accessed May 24, 2024. https://sociologydictionary.org/white-collar/.

MLA – Modern Language Association (7th edition)

“white-collar.” Open Education Sociology Dictionary. Ed. Kenton Bell. 2014. Web. 24 May. 2024. <https://sociologydictionary.org/white-collar/>.